As we near the end of January, I think it’s time for a little check-in. How are you doing with your 2017 goals?! What are you working towards? For me, it’s the Year of Less. Not less of the stuff that I love, but less of the stuff that I don’t. Less rush, less stress, less needless accumulations, less pressure on myself, less judgment, and less commitment. By focusing on less of these things, I’m making space in my life for more of what matters. More time spent with family and friends, more good books under the covers, more delicious food, and more opportunities to just breathe and appreciate the person that I am and the gifts that I already have. One way that I’m eliminating unnecessary stress in my life is by focusing on quick and easy solutions to my everyday responsibilities. There’s no need to make life complicated, so when I need to get dinner on the table for my family I turn to classic comfort food dishes like this Salisbury Steak. With only 15 minutes of prep, I can put a healthy meal in the slow cooker or in the oven without much hassle…leaving me more time for the good stuff.
To be honest, some days are better than others. It’s definitely a work in progress, as I negotiate my priorities, learn to say “no,” and attempt that delicate (and elusive) thing we call balance. How many projects can I take on without making myself crazy? I want to be challenged and fulfilled, but not depleted. How many minutes can I spend relaxing in a yoga stretch before my mind starts to spin and I find myself mentally going through my to-do list instead of meditating in the present? And how many meetings, phone calls, or errands can I schedule before I feel run down, stressed, and snapping at the kids because I’m pulled too thin? You get the idea. This journey is not always easy and I’m not even sure there’s an end point; but I’m determined to make progress towards slowing down, taking on less, and flowing with our current situation instead of manhandling it into something that doesn’t fit.
The movement towards “less” can also apply to those of you who have set weight loss or healthy living goals for 2017. For instance, a better diet doesn’t necessarily mean cutting out all of your favorite foods or depriving yourself of what you love. It might mean eating less of the not-so-good stuff and more of the nutritional powerhouses, but the idea is to fill your life (and your plate) with what serves you. Enjoy the foods that you love in moderation, but also focus on eating more of the dishes that make your body feel good. For instance, by using lean ground beef and plenty of zesty seasoning, a hearty serving of this Salisbury Steak satisfies the craving for a burger or creamy gravy, while still clocking in at well under 300 calories.
Like a giant hug at the end of the day, this easy Salisbury Steak tastes decadent, cozy, and warm. For big appetites, serve it with mashed potatoes or egg noodles to soak up the extra gravy (there’s plenty, believe me!). For a lighter option, try it with cauliflower rice, a side of broccoli, or wholegrain brown rice.
My simple version of the retro favorite is a perfect example of when less is more. With less effort, less struggle, and less time in the kitchen, you get a dinner that achieves more. More nourishing food for your body, more special time as a family around the table, and more satisfaction for YOU…because you deserve the opportunity to enjoy your food, to be proud of what you have accomplished, and to feel like a great success…even when you’ve actually done less.
Slow Cooker or Oven Baked Salisbury Steak
- 1 lb. ground beef (I used 96% lean)
- 1 (1 ounce) packet dry onion soup mix
- ¼ cup breadcrumbs (I used Panko breadcrumbs)
- ¼ cup milk
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 (8 ounce) container sliced fresh mushrooms
- 2 (10.75 ounce) cans condensed cream of mushroom soup (NOT diluted) (I used Campbell’s Healthy Request)
- 1 (1 ounce) packet dry au jus gravy mix (such as McCormick brand)
- ¾ cup water
- In a large bowl, gently use your hands to mix together ground beef, onion soup mix, breadcrumbs, and milk.
- Shape meat into 4 patties.
- Heat about 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook patties for about 3 minutes per side, or just until browned (but not cooked through).
- Place onions and mushrooms in the bottom of a large slow cooker. Place patties on top.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together condensed soup, dry au jus mix, and water. Pour sauce into the slow cooker.
- Cook on LOW for 3-4 hours.
This dish can be prepared in a casserole dish in the oven, instead of in a slow cooker. Just place the ingredients in the casserole dish, cover, and bake at 325 degrees F for about 1 hour.
Cooking for Just Two? You can cut the Salisbury Steak recipe in half and prepare 2 patties with half as much gravy. Since ground beef is often sold in 1-lb. packages, freeze the remaining 1/2-lb. of meat and use it for a later meal.